Thirty Green Bottles

29 01 2010

This is my entry to this week’s 100 Word Challenge from Velvet Verbosity. The prompt this week is Thirty.

There were bottles on the windowsill; dusty, all green and organized into rows of ten. There were three rows, almost. Almost. Each one contained a rolled up piece of paper, golden by age. She took the last sip from her Heineken bottle and peeled off the label – slowly, carefully, reluctantly. Then she took her notepad, newly bought but made to look worn.

It’s never too late she wrote, before tearing out the page and curling it.

“There were thirty green bottles…” she started to sing under her breath as she walked towards the window.

She remembered when there were ten.

(Just in case you don’t know or have forgotten the song I drove my mother insane with as a child, click here.)

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Kids having kids.

26 01 2010

A girl in my neighbourhood gave birth about a week ago. She’s 12 years old. There are 15 people living in her 3 bedroom house. It’s filthy and there are now 3 young children there. Today the 12 year old mother’s mother got arrested for possession of drugs. There are still a lot of addicts living in that house.

For a reason I don’t know, Social Services haven’t got involved. It’s ridiculous. There is a twelve year old trying to look after baby amongst a houseful of drug addicts, alcoholics and lazy, unemployed adults who aren’t much more capable of looking after children themselves. To be quite honest, it makes me hate the way things are run around here. There was a gun scare at my school on Friday, and an old friend has apparently committed suicide.

It’s all a little surreal. Just-turned-teens having kids, guns, suicide. They’re all things I thought I would never come across. You see things on the news and hear stories, but there’s a little part that says “don’t listen, it’s the media” and you go on with your life thinking these things are just anomalies. Shocking, yes, but rare and unlikely. It’s starting to dawn on me that whilst there are still trees that look beautiful at sunset and fields that haven’t been cut for decades and all manner of beautiful things, the world can be dark. It can be scary, and there are a great many things in it that contain no beauty at all, no matter how hard you search for something good in a bad situation.

This also leads me on to saying that I’ve been fifteen years of age for well over a month now. I’ve seen more unpleasant things in the last few weeks than I can remember, and it makes me wonder if they were always there and I just never noticed because I was lost in my own childish world. I can’t stop myself from growing up, but I won’t forget how to have fun. I won’t forget that when making an outfit for a child’s art project you can put the sheet over yourself and run around making ghost noises for a good ten minutes. I’ll keep myself aware of war and poverty and terrible things like the Haitian earthquake, but twenty years from now I’ll still be able to look at a tree without thinking of a table.

I won’t forget fun.





Exhibit

12 01 2010

(This is a creative writing piece for my English class. The brief just said that someone was to be stuck in a cuboid, and I did the first thing that came to mind. It’s not great, but I like it quite a bit.)

“One word: Two syllables – rhymes with lazy.” Was he insistent on ruining my day? I turned, sure the sound was coming from my left. Not there. “Guess again.” I turned to my right, then completely round in a circle. Nowhere.

“Gee, this sure is fun.” I said, trying to match his tone. The truth was, I missed seeing the psychotic figment of my imagination that had got me here in the first place. All I saw now was mirrors. I couldn’t see out, but they could see in.

Code wasn’t real, by anyone’s standards. I knew that, but he was the closest I had to something real in that stupid box. I could see myself going insane. Day by day my hair got greasier and further back on my forehead from running my hands through it a million times. Day by day the bags under my eyes grew from the effects of insomnia. Day by day my caring lessened for the outside world and those who actually loved me. The ones who fought for me when it was decided I would go here. They weren’t here now.

One of the horrid effects of knowing you’re crazy is not being sure what’s real and what isn’t. Sometimes I thought this was all in my head. Sometimes I closed my eyes really tightly and told myself over and over that when I opened them I’d be back home with a loving family and a dog curled up at my feet. I must’ve looked even more insane to the people watching, but at least they were getting their moneys worth. Hypocrites.

“Code, quit it. Let me see you.” I really was that desperate to see some form of humanity besides myself.

“Look in the mirror idiot. What part of imaginary can’t you understand?”

“Well I’m certainly not getting the image part.” I tried smirking, but failed miserably, a little more hurt than I was letting anyone see. “You’re not bothered by any of this are you? You’re not bothered by this stupid place with its stupid boxes and its stupid mirrors.” My face carved itself into a snarl without my permission.

“If you’re bothered, I’m bothered.” I heard a chuckle under his breath. There were many times in my life, and in fact, in a day, that I wanted to punch Code. If it hadn’t been for his not being real and not being visible, I would’ve tried.

“I’m off for a while. Business stuff. Think you can survive without me?” he said.

“I’ll try.” I had to be careful of my words around Code. It was kind of welcome when he left (I could tell because the constant sneering and laughing stopped), although I could not for the life of me figure out what business part of a schizophrenic boys mind had to deal with, although if I was to guess on Code, it wouldn’t be anything legal.

I gradually stood up and started feeling my way around the box, focusing my attention on my hands rather than my own reflection. I must’ve looked like a mime artist to the people watching. I wonder if they all laughed as they watched, taking pictures with their fancy Nikon cameras as they sat to eat the sandwiches they’d brought along. That was another thing: it must have been coming up to 3 o’clock, feeding time at the zoo would be long over by now on any normal day, but I hadn’t got anything. Had they forgot me today?

That was the only way to describe the place. It was a human zoo. All the freaks on display for the public to see. Trapped behind glass because they’re too dangerous to lead a normal life. At least I wasn’t claustrophobic – although I was slowly beginning to feel that way. There’s really only so much any human being can take when trapped in a box barely big enough to stand in with nothing real to cling to. At first there’s panic; terror; irrational behaviour like spinning around for hours in despair or throwing your entire body at one of the mirrors. I’d tried both. Next you wait to be rescued, you give yourself false hope. Maybe you start hearing things at that stage, or perhaps it’s just me. After that, when you know that there’s no way out and no one is coming to your rescue, a kind of numbing fear sets in. Disbelief. Despair. Once they’re there, they can’t escape either.

That’s what they want, the people who made this place. They want the craziest of the crazies. You have to be mad as a hatter to find yourself on one of these steel podiums, above the rest of the world, sitting broken and hopeless in a way that somehow makes people want to see you.





Better

9 01 2010

(For some reason, I can’t get spaces between the verses.)

This is your initiation

Judgement without complication

Leave your pity at the door

Bring the sins that we adore

Feed our minds and feed our eyes

Be the one we all despise

You could be our new addiction

Feed us with spiteful, brutal fiction

Low is our tolerance for chores and normality

We’re aesthetic elite without rules or morality

Forget all your prayers, there’s no chance of salvation

Forget about love; this is infatuation

Forget about equality, we’re here to win

All we need is your life and then baby,

You’re in.





Skating to school

8 01 2010

Two days ago we got snow here, around 5cm, it was lovely. I went out to see it all and got pelted with snowballs by at least 5 excited kids. We got 2 days off school but we’re going back tomorrow. See, the snow froze overnight, didn’t melt and is now deadly. It’s going to be a whole lot of fun I’m sure, walking a mile to school tomorrow. Lame, right?

My shoes have absolutely no grip, and I have PE.

I also have a hell of a load of homework to do.

Anyway, being in the snow made me realize a  few things:

  • Everything looks better in the snow. People have bright red noses and chattering teeth but they look more beautiful than you’ve seen them in a long while.
  • Adults can actually have fun with kids. So many kids forced their parents off the sofa to help them roll that snowball that was getting heavy and give their man a head. Okay, a couple of parents just used their kids to help get their mates house messy, but it was nice to see everyone smiling.
  • That was the first time I’ve been out like that for months. I saw a load of people I don’t know, and I threw snowballs at strangers. It was amazingly fun.

That’s what snow does to people. It makes them forget about the bills they’re trying to pay off or the homework a week overdue. When you make snow angels with your little brother and take 50 pictures of yourself doing so, it’s kind of magical. I’m glad the stuff is rare here. At least when I fall over and break my neck tomorrow, I’ll have a fair few photo albums to look through in hospital.





Wreck the halls.

19 12 2009

Oh dear, this place is a mess. I’m ashamed, really. Just another teenager left home alone who doesn’t tidy up behind herself and forgets to do chores because she’s busy watching old episodes of Fringe. I bloody love Fringe.

My mother is in hospital again, she’s just had her ovaries taken out and should be home tomorrow. Gran’s been offering to come up and stay, but there’s no way I’m letting her see my room. The shambles that it is. I’ll get the place tidied before mum gets back tomorrow. At least, I’ll think about it. It’s the thought that counts.

The dog’s not eating anything. It’s scary.

Also, how many days until Christmas day now? Eight? Nine? SIX?! I still haven’t bought any presents, and forget about your cards. I’ve been meaning to, but with mum in hospital it just hasn’t happened. The three younger brothers are semi-behaving, which is progress. “You’re not our mum.” is the most commonly used phrase in our house at the moment. No surprise there.

I should get a poem up on here soon, I just have to write one that I like first. Tougher than you think.





My mother is drunk.

11 12 2009

And is singing “What should we do with the drunken sailor” over and over. It’s quite funny really, if you look past the embarrassment.

She’s also almost poked me in the eye 4 times due to random outbursts about how stupid she thinks various things are. Like the school getting my brothers’ names the wrong way round on one of those little accident forms.

My birthday on Monday!

Schedule for the weekend:

  • Saturday morning – shopping for brothers birthday present and friends birthday present. Both late, of course.
  • Saturday evening – Friends birthday meal. Eating Spaghetti Carbonara or something like that. It’s supposed to be nice.
  • Saturday night – X Factor final, what else?
  • Sunday morning – Christmas shopping with the hopefully sober mother. MUST BUY GUITAR FOR 5 YEAR OLD BROTHER OR BE FOREVER BRANDED WORST SISTER IN THE WORLD.
  • Sunday evening – Wrapping the Christmas presents and complaining about how little money I have left.
  • Sunday night – Homework. (This probably won’t get done)

And amongst that I’ll sneak in some reading and a little bit of writing. Left two poems down Gran’s house so you don’t get to see them, you lucky people. I do love her cat though.

I love my cat.

She’s one of those yeah, a quick scratch behind the ear and then be gone, peasant types. So today it was a big surprise that she let me pet her for nearly an hour. I had a nap in that time as well. Really, I think she was cold (I need a heater). Petting cats is so relaxing.

Oh, that’s a point; my Gran’s teaching me how to knit.

It’s exciting.

I start out with 30 stitches and end up with 43.

😀

I’ll post on this thing more.

Peace out for now, sweethearts,

Chloe.

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